via Army back Chigwedere’s return 11/01/2015
THE military are said to have been the chief architects behind Aeneas Chigwedere’s return to high profile politics as they reportedly arm twisted the Zanu PF leadership into bringing the former Mashonaland East governor back as a way to secure their interests in the province.
Chigwedere was at the weekend plucked from political obscurity to lead the revival of the party’s structures in the troubled province in an interim capacity.
Details have now emerged of internal scheming by top military heavyweights uneasy at the meteoric rise of newly appointed provincial affairs minister Joel Biggie Matiza.
Matiza is seen as a leading contender to be substantive chairperson to take over from the fired Ray Kaukonde.
“The military and other top politicians in the province have for years benefited from protection fees paid by the remaining white commercial farmers in the province. Matiza has challenged that and threatened their source of income.
“The uneasiness is palpable and in the hours prior to Saviour Kasukuwere (Zanu PF national commissar)’s visit, Matiza had been seconded to be interim chairperson but there was night-time horse trading until the party’s leadership in consultation with President Mugabe agreed on a compromise candidate in the form of Chigwedere,” said an insider privy to the goings on.
“However Chigwedere is a spent force and I am not sure there is enough to stop Matiza from taking over in the end”.
Matiza will deputise Chigwedere in the interim set-up that also includes University of Zimbabwe Political Science lecturer Charity Manyeruke, representatives of the Women’s League as well as war veterans.
The temporary set-up announced by Kasukuwere Saturday was mandated with implementing the renewal of the party’s structures in the province literally starting from scratch following the highly divisive congress held late 2014.
Kaukonde was fingered in an alleged plot to assassinate President Robert Mugabe and replace him with his then deputy Joice Mujuru.
The pint-sized former Zanu PF provincial head was said to be the financier of the said plot with reports now claiming white farmers in the province had been forced to cough-up huge sums of money to support the “internal regime change agenda” in order that their properties are spared expropriation.
On the contrary, following his elevation from a mere legislator and deputy minister to provincial honcho, Matiza has wasted no time, turning his guns on “anyone sitting on a farm without the requisite documentation”.
“We will move with speed to take the land and give it to our people. There will be no sacred cows and I am aware that some people are trying to fight what we are doing but I will not be intimidated.
“They have also tried to bribe me and I have told them keep your bribes,” Matiza reportedly told hundreds of cheering party supporters in Goromonzi last week.